Half-covering the gash, I had to make an excuse and leave abruptly so that he didn't cotton on. To cover the slight five-o’clock shadow on my upper lip and chin, I once applied four layers of foundation, only for it to transfer all over my date's pristine white shirt.

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) but I'd pretend I wasn't in after a wax earlier in the day had left me red and sore.

I think my absolute hatred of baring my body contributed to the failure of our relationship – he didn't get it, and I was perpetually embarrassed.

It’s my worst nightmare to catch a guy I’m into analysing my face in the cold, natural light of day and worse still to have him comment on a few stray chin hairs I may have missed.

Underground cocktail bars with dark and moody lighting are where I feel most comfortable – even then I’ll always wear my long hair down, like a comfort blanket.

Soon, I'd be expected to party in barely-there outfits, and sharing a minuscule bathroom with seven other people meant I couldn't spend hours removing my excess hair.

But it was meeting men that instilled the worst anxiety in me.

Although I have learned to manage my facial and body hair a little better (more on that later), spontaneous dates are still out of the question.

I need at least 24 hours to obliterate every single hair properly (in which time, some have already grown back) and if I'm going in for a wax, at least two days to let the redness subside.

Then, a week before starting as a fresher at university, I was diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) – a hormonal condition that affects 1 in 5 women in the UK.